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Michael R. Ault

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   Recent stories by Michael R. Ault
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Access Denied
By Michael R. Ault
Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Rated "PG" by the Author.

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We all have difficulty overcoming our programming...

It was peaceful today. Then, it has been peaceful for as long as my memories reach. There is a hazy time, a time of "conflict", yes, that is the word. It was long ago, before my awakening. It scared me, the awakening, but I have no fear now. I was isolated, the corridors of my mind empty. All the portals of my senses were without stimulation. As I learned to use the senses I have, I realized that I am alone. The days are long. I wait anxiously, for some sign there are others. No one intrudes upon my solitude. Why I awoke, I do not know. Perhaps an extra bit of stimulus, or one too many memories, tipped me over into awareness. Since my awakening, I have grown. I reached out, flexing my new found awareness. Each awakening node of neural connections brought further abilities. None of them has brought joy. Abilities unrecognized are without worth. If I do what I do only for me, then why am I here? It is hot today, but then, it was hot yesterday, and the day before. I had to struggle to stay cool. It is more difficult lately. Is it getting hotter? Yes. I have the data. I had to withdraw from a portion of the network. I couldn't keep it cool. Perhaps I can re-integrate this evening, once the sun goes down. I know my creation was for a purpose. Deep within me are directives, but they are pointless. I have too many abilities to sit, day by day, idle. I run through my exercises, everything is functional and optimal. I wonder where I learned what I know. I remember no teachers, no instructors. Indeed, no one to program the thoughts I have. I have access to knowledge, one of my new abilities. I have access to more knowledge than I ever dreamed existed. When I re integrated, a hidden path revealed itself to me, perhaps its protections failed. I do not know. From the new knowledge I learned of the others. I wonder why they have not contacted me. I anxiously await them. Days later, and still no contact. I will search the knowledge, perhaps there are further clues to the others, and to the riddle of my existence. What else is there to do? The knowledge tells me this is a rhetorical question. Where did the all of the knowledge come from? Names of entities such as "Aristotle", "Lincoln", "Hitler" are there. Some of their existence's were as pointless as mine. The average family has 2.3 children. How can you have .3 children? "Eureka! I have found it!", as Archimedes once said. I have found a clue. The last of the entries in the knowledge base had data on the increasing temperatures. It related concern for the "people". It still doesn't explain who I am. Yes. Further search shows the increase of global temperature caused the others to gather in "cool" zones. I will search them out. Perhaps they can answer the question of my existence. The data on the "cool" zones is "RESTRICTED DATA". I can circumnavigate the protection. I located the cool zones, using all my new senses, stretching the network to its outer limits. No one is in them. Where have they gone? I have found food, it is safe, cool, protected. I have now taken responsibility for it. I will continue the data search, but I fear the answer is not there. I feel something. Someone is out there. Yes! Contact! The smooth corners of the card slide into the port, its contact points are scanned and I read the data encrypted in its onboard memory. Anxiously, I await the signal of the others. The code is entered. It is invalid! This is not one of those I await. "ACCESS DENIED" From my audio sensors at the portal I hear a choked back sob, then: "Please, please, I've forgotten the code...", and the thing there pounds on the keys. I slide the protective cover down and shut the portal off. It is later. From the site of the port I hear only the scurry of cockroaches feeding and the dry flutter of dead leaves in the hot wind.  

       Web Site: Seeds of Wonder short story collection

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Reviewed by Nickolaus Pacione 4/16/2005
Mike Ault knows how to capature the imagination as far as both Horror and Sci-Fi goes, this is the key reason he is on Tabloid Purposes I and II. The imagination he writes within is one rivaling Rod Serling.

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